Where am I?
A sharp sound came from an open door to the right.
Peeking through the small slit in the door, revealed a small red Kacheek sitting
alone in an abandoned art classroom, a pencil with a broken tip held in her
open paw. Tears were welling up in the Kacheek's eyes and immediately she thrust
her head into her arms, shoulders shaking.
"Do not cry little one, wipe away those tears,"
came a warm, assuring voice. The red Kacheek looked up and saw a faerie standing
in front of her. The sun's rays shined from behind the faerie's and gave her
a calm glow. Sniffing, the Kacheek wiped her eyes with a furry paw and stared
at the faerie before her. The Light Faerie smiled warmly at the bewildered Kacheek
before continuing in the same kind tone.
"Little one, you have many talents little Carina
Vayle. I feel you are responsible enough to handle a simple gift so I present
to you this trinket to replace your broken pencil."
The faerie extended a hand and Carina's eyes
widened when she saw a shiny gold-tipped fountain pen, small enough to fit in
her small paws. Then she looked expectantly at the faerie.
"Can I please have the pretty pen, please?" Carina
asked. The faerie laughed merrily.
"And so polite too, of course you can have the
pen, Carina Vayle." Carina was about to take the pen when the faerie withdrew
her hand. "First Carina I want you to promise me that you'll always write only
what is true. This pen is a very special pen and it can only be used to write
what has truly happened. It will also never run out of ink so you needn't worry
about it. Can you promise me that you will always hold on to this pen and use
it to write only the truth?"
"Yes, okay, Miss Faerie, I promise that I will,"
Carina said quickly. The faerie smiled and handed Carina the pen. Carina felt
the warm surface of the pen and stroked the gold tip. "Wow, pretty." The Kacheek
and the faerie faded away.
Why am I here? Why am I seeing this?
A garbled array of voices droned in the background
but two very distinct voices sounded in the air.
"Just you wait Billy, I'll tell," Carina squeaked
painfully as she picked herself off the floor.
"Go ahead and tell, you little pipsqueak, see
if I care." That set the Wocky off laughing again. Carina huffed and strode
off towards the Neoschool's main doors.
This can't be happening. I feel dizzy.
Then the surroundings became a room, a child's
room. A small red Kacheek was kneeling next to a small pile of books strewn
on the floor, a tear glistening on one cheek. Her paws moved slowly, picking
up a book then setting it down on a pile then picking up another and repeating
the entire process. Then the Kacheek stopped. Carefully she picked up a small
gold pen and held it up.
Her thoughts rang out clear as a bell.
Hmm, where did this come from? Carina puzzled
as she picked up the pen and turned it over. I remember, Miss Faerie gave it
to me! Oh well, I'll use this then. Carina happily laid the notebook on
her desk and set the pen on the clean white paper. Hmm, now what shall I
write? Carina thought, her brow furrowed. I know, I'll write about that
Carina started writing a story about a heroic
Petpet from Meridell (actually the next door neighbour's one) who went to fight
an evil Wocky (Billy) who had bullied a red Kacheek named (of course) Carina.
Gold ink flowed effortlessly from the pen's sharp tip and glowed a soft gold
colour but Carina too no notice. The more Carina wrote the less angry and sad
she felt and after about an hour had passed she was nearly done, a small smile
on her face.
… And the evil Billy was never seen ever again.
The Petpet was aptly rewarded with as much snacks as his little Petpet belly
could take by the kind faerie - OH NO!
Carina had just remembered the second part of
the promise she made to the beautiful faerie that gave her the pen; write only
the truth. Looking down at her notebook, she now saw the glow of the gold letters
and was about to rub of the ink with her eraser when the gold ink faded into
a normal black shade. Try as she might to rub off them off the words stubbornly
refused to vanish. Beads of sweat were now streaming down her forehead and she
was still holding onto the pen. Carefully she closed the book and ran to her
bed, burying herself under the sheets so she wouldn't be seen. Soon she fell
asleep, the pen still grasped tightly in her paws. It swirled and floated away
as if a breeze was blowing.
I … I can't take th … this anymore
"Carina dear, remember that nice woman next door
and her Uni," her father began hesitantly. "Well today they lost their Doglefox,
you remember the one you like to play with when they weren't around." Carina
gasped and clutched her paws to her mouth, but her father assumed it was nothing
more than shock so he continued. "I was helping them look for their Petpet all
afternoon and that's why I'm late. Carina I know you're upset -"
"It's all my fault," Carina wailed, tears streaming
down her eyes. "It's all my fault." Carina's father looked surprised at his
daughter and patted her on her shoulder.
Two wet tears fell on to the landscape as it
Why… why is this happening again?
"I know what you wish to tell me, Carina Vayle,"
'Miss Faerie' said sadly. "And I wish that it can be fixed, but I'm afraid it
can't. Your neighbour's Petpet is lost forever, and so is the Wocky named Billy."
"I don't care about Billy, Miss Faerie," Carina
replied desperately. "All I want is to have the Doglefox back where it is."
The Light Faerie's eyes narrowed slightly.
"Carina, do you not think that Billy may have
had a family," she said coldly. "A family that is now worrying and searching
for him. You made two, not one but two, groups of people, your neighbour and
Billy's family, worry about the thing they love the most and you and I both
know they will never see them again. And Carina you broke our promise." Carina
lowered her head and started sniffing. She felt guilty for what she had done
and was about to burst into tears.
"I … I'm sorry Miss Faerie, I really am, and…
and I promise that I'll never do it again," Carina cried, a tear falling from
her furry cheeks. "Can you … can you make everything all right again, please."
The faerie shook her head slowly.
"I am sorry Carina but I cannot. You must realise
that I cannot simply wave my hand and make things back the way it was. It is
much more complicated than that and I regret to tell you I cannot reverse what
has already passed. There is nothing you and I can do." The Light Faerie put
a warm, reassuring hand on Carina's shaking shoulder. Carina looked up at her,
tears welling in her eyes.
"You mean -"
"Yes Carina, I am sorry." Carina looked away,
warm tears flowing down her face. Then her hand brushed the gold pen at her
side. Slowly she took it out and held it out to the Light Faerie. She looked
at the pen before her and smiled. "I know what you are thinking but you must
remember your promise to keep that pen always and use it only to write the truth.
I will give you a second chance to keep both your promises and I hope you learn
a lesson from all this." The faerie started drifting further away from Carina.
"Goodbye, Carina Vayle." Then she vanished and Carina knew she would never see
Carina looked down at the golden pen in her open
paw. No! This can't be! Carina thought angrily to herself. I know,
I'll write them back! That's it. Why didn't I think of this before? Carina
quickly rummaged through her bag and grabbed the Acara notebook, opened it and
laid it on the desk. Carina shook the gold pen and started to write.
Or would have. Carina struggled to think of something
to write, some brilliant story that would bring everything back to normal, a
happy ending. Sadly she couldn't, her mind a total blank. It was fear. I
can't do this, Carina thought, fingers trembling. What if something goes
wrong? What if I make things worst? What if Miss Faerie finds out? I … can't
do it. Carina let the pen drop from her paws and watched it roll across
the notebook. Quietly she scooped up the notebook and pen and carefully kept
them in her knapsack with a sob. She couldn't make things right, no one could.
With that Carina picked up her schoolbag, pushed open the abandoned classroom's
creaking door and walked out into the dark hallways
I don't want to see anymore. I … I …
"Carina stay here. I have something to do in
"But I want to come with you, Dad," Carina begged.
Her father shook his head and held her tightly.
"No, Carina, stay here," Carina's father said
firmly. Turning he rushed into the dark cave mouth. The little red Kacheek watched
her father enter the cave and fell to her knees.
Carina bolted upright in her bed, her breathing
laboured and cold sweat dripping down her pallid face. Pale moonlight filtered
through the curtains of her room and bathed her in its cool glow. Carina looked
at her red paws and held them to her face, wiping away a few stray tears that
"It was just a nightmare," Carina told herself
as her breathing slowed. "It was just a nightmare." Then she lay down, staring
at the ceiling. Carina stared at the ceiling for the rest of the hour before
sleep finally came for her.
* * * * *
High above the clouds hanging over Neopia, Fyora the Faerie Queen watched the
world of Neopia from the safety of her hidden tower. She could see the moon,
Kreludor, and the small, ball-sized array of lights that was the Virtupets Space
Station above her and the quiet, peaceful lands of Neopia below her.
Fyora turned to her crystal ball next to her
and peered listlessly into it, watching as Carina fell asleep. Fyora stared
as the shifting image of the red Kacheek clouded over and recalled what had
happened 15 years ago.
* * * * *
"But Your Highness, I wish to point out that the Neopians below are too dependent
on us for help. I would suggest that we make them forge their own future and leave
us to our own dealings. We have too much on our mind as it is, my queen."
Fyora sat in her throne and listened intently
to the husky voice of Jhudora the Dark Faerie. Jhudora's sister, Illusen, sat
kneeled beside her and calmly listened before replying.
"Your Highness, the Neopians below are still
in need of our help and us being higher beings need to help out a person in
need. I have lived in the land below and - "
"And have helped those useless, spineless little
Neopets who expect us to do everything for them! Sista' you really need to see
the big picture!" Jhudora spread her hands in a sweeping gesture. " Soon we'll
be overrun by requests and even our Queen could not handle it then," Jhudora
spat in contempt. Fyora held out her hands.
"Enough of this bickering." Illusen and Jhudora
both bowed and Fyora continued. "I will take the matter into consideration.
In the meantime you are both dismissed. Faerie court is adjourned." Fyora watched
as Illusen, Fyora and a multitude of lesser faeries streamed out. Fyora caught
Jhudora staring at her sister with disdain, but could only shake her head. Sibling
rivalry, that's all it is. Idly, Fyora looked out of one of the faerie palace's
many large windows and started thinking.
Then she got an idea. Hurriedly she rushed to
her hidden tower to begin crafting the artefact. The Neopians below could and
will carve their own history, no one could tell them otherwise, and this will
be the perfect object to help them out. Fluttering daintily to her tower, Fyora
unlocked the door and snapped it shut. An hour later the gold material on her
small table began to take shape … into the shape of a pen.
Two weeks later
"My Queen, your art improves with the ages."
"Yes, yes, it is beautiful as it is powerful."
Fyora listened as all kinds of faeries, from
dark to light and fire to water, all admired her latest artefact. She motioned
for silence. "This will be a gift to the Neopians below and hopefully they will
use it wisely."
Jhudora jumped at the chance. "Your Highness,
if I may be so bold, I know the perfect Neopian to accept such a rare gift."
She was thinking of her more sinister servants. Illusen saw through the charade
"My Queen, my sister is far from qualified to
partake of such an artifact. Might I present it to a more deserving soul."
"Sista' you had your chance and you blew it!
It was my idea in the first place!"
"What about us? We helped forge it," squeaked
a couple of Fire Faeries.
"Yeah, don't forget us," piped a group of Air
The arguments gathered speed and soon the whole
throne room was in disarray. Fyora began to regret asking all the faeries to
help make the pen, regretted even making the artefact. The noise was overwhelming
and Fyora couldn't stand it any longer.
"ENOUGH!" The faeries froze and stared at their
queen. Rarely did her temper show and they were all stunned. "I will choose
the one who will receive the artefact and who will present it in one week and
no more. Does anyone disagree?" All heads in the throne room, even Jhudora's,
shook. "Good, now, dismissed."
A week later
"Your Highness, I wish to say that I respect the choice you have made," an
Earth Faerie named Illusen said reverently. All the other assembled faeries too
nodded their heads, disappointed. Fyora nodded and ignored the figure next to
her. The figure was Jhudora the Dark Faerie, who at this time was trembling with
mute anger. Illusen looked at her sister and knew exactly what she was thinking,
and this made her grin. Finally Jhudora spoke in an even voice.
"My Queen, I wish to say how disappointed I am
with your choice," the Dark Faerie began. "But I do not wish to contest it and
like the council I will respect your choice. I take my leave." Then she saw
her sister's grin. "What are YOU smiling at?" Jhudora shouted at Illusen.
"Oh nothing," Illusen said wistfully. "It's just
your face looks so puffy when you're mad."
"What?! Why I -"
"Thank you Jhudora," Fyora said finally. "And
Illusen," she added. Both bowed respectfully, though Jhudora's fists were clenched
tightly. Fyora continued. "Faerie court is now adjourned. You may go now." Jhudora
jumped to her feet and stomped out of the hall, Illusen following suit, surely
to heap some more insults on her sister. Fyora smiled as she watched the rest
of the faeries floated off dejectedly but she knew they would get over it, someday.
Then her smile vanished and she said a silent prayer and hoped that Carina would
get over it too.
* * * * *
Fyora shook her head and looked out the window yet again. Truly she wished
that Carina could forget the tragedies that happened, but she knew that the
years could not erase the bad memories. She regretted her decision, but it was
too late. What had passed had passed.
Fyora floated away from the window and retreated
deeper into the recesses of her tower.
To be continued …
Author's Note: A sad tale no doubt but this is just the prologue. In the next
part the story really picks up so stay tuned.